Writing Center Resources

Online Resources

The Internet can be either your best friend or your worst enemy.

Any writing center director or tutor looking for good writing center resources would naturally consult Google for ideas. However, for every useful resource a Google search yields, one often must sort through three to ten not-so-useful hits.

We would like to direct your attention to a few sites that our center has found useful both for tutor professional development and for consultations with students, particularly students from science and engineering disciplines.

Tutor Training and Professional Development

The International Writing Centers Association (IWCA) has the best collection of resources to consult on tutor training and writing center development (See “Useful Links”: http://writingcenters.org/resources/peer-tutoring/). We recommend PeerCentered (www.peercentered.org), a blog that allows peer tutors to interact with colleagues internationally. This resource is particularly useful for writing centers in remote locations with few neighboring institutions.

Scientific and Engineering Communication Resources

Our engineering writing consultant (Clemens) has several favorite online resources for working with students in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields.

Penn State’s “Writing Guidelines for Engineering and Science Students” (http://www.writing.engr.psu.edu/). This website compiles useful information on everything from laboratory and technical reports to business correspondence such as memos and letters.

The University of Portland School of Engineering (http://www.up.edu/showimage/show.aspx?file=20198). This useful document provides information on numerous engineering genres.

The UCLA Graduate Writing Center (http://gsrc.ucla.edu/gwc/resources/writing-in-the-sciences-and-engineering.html). This website compiles scientific and engineering genres useful for graduate students and contains links to information on writing journal articles, theses and dissertations, grant proposals, etc.

Colin Purrington, “Designing Conference Posters” (http://colinpurrington.com/tips/academic/posterdesign). Colin’s site has quickly become a definitive online resource for creating conference posters, with design tips, poster templates, and an interactive “Pimp My Poster” Flikr page where students can post their own posters for comments and advice.

We welcome comments and questions from our colleagues throughout the RMWCA area! Just email us at write@nmt.edu.

—Steve Simpson, Rebecca Clemens, and Samantha Miranda
New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology

Print Resources

Two of my favorite go-to resources about writing centers are the following annotated bibliographies:

Brown, Kate. “Five Years of Writing Center Journal Scholarship: An Annotated Bibliography.” Writing Center Journal 26.1 (2006): 83-87. Print.

DeShaw, Dana, Joan Mullin, and Albert C. DeCiccio. "Twenty Years of Writing Center Journal Scholarship: an Annotated Bibliography." Writing Center Journal 20.2 (2000): 39-72. Print.

These are certainly helpful if someone wanted to get caught up to speed on many of the long-term conversations that writing center folks have been having.  

—Melissa Keith

Boise State University